(L to R) Michelle Hill, Christy Tomlinson, Sam Kangas, Kristen Robinson, Me and Teresa Collins
Sorry for the delay in getting you a CKU wrap up. I got home the Sunday before Halloween and then went straight into mommy mode with laundry and cooking and getting the kids ready for trick-or-treating Monday evening. Then I had Julie’s stencil blog hop, a weekend away with my hubby just the two of us because our anniversary weekend was so busy this was the first weekend on the calendar we could schedule it. You know, yada…yada…yada.
The point is that I’m here now to talk a little bit about teaching at the Creating Keepsakes 10 year Reunion event held in beautiful La Jolla, California (essentially San Diego). I arrived Thursday afternoon with much anticipation, particularly in meeting up with my dear friend and co-teacher for the event Kristen Robinson. Even though it’s only been a few months since we’ve seen each other, it really was a girlfriend reunion those first minutes of seeing each other with a rushing of words to catch the other up on life.
After a quick dinner, we got right to business with the opening ceremonies. At the top is a pic of the teachers right before the students arrived. We are in front of the gorgeous candy bar filled with many, many sweet treats and the cutest handmade scrapbooking banner.
It was wonderful to see Teresa Collins again. I met her earlier this year and we just clicked. Of course, we knew of each other because of the crafts industry, but when I talked to her for the first time, it was like we’d been friends forever. Teresa in person is just like she is on her blog. She is open and caring and genuine. A true friendship is developing and I’m thrilled.
I also got to see Jodi Sanford, the owner of the wonderful paper company Fancy Pants and meet Christy Tomlinson for the first time. Also see Michelle Hill again and say ‘hey.” She really is that bubbly all the time and so, so cute! I was jazzed about meeting Samantha Kangas with Technique Tuesday. This lady has been in the industry forever. She’s seen it all, done it all, knows where the bodies are buried (figuratively, of course) and is still just as open-hearted and kind as anyone you would have the sincere pleasure of meeting.
Opening ceremonies got everyone charged up to be together for a special event. Teachers were pulled up on stage and embarrassing 10 years ago photos were revealed on giant screens, along with photos of our work from a decade ago. Yikes, I winced when my scrapbook page was put up there for all to see. All I can say is my work has changed A LOT over the years. Whew!
At 9 p.m. the madness began of me and Kristen helping over 250 ladies make their bezels and pour ICE Resin into them so they had overnight to dry for our classes the next day. The last bezel was finished right before the stroke of midnight. Again,”whew!” The photo below is only half of the drying bezels. We filled four tables.
Classes commenced the next day at 9 a.m. sharp. The ladies were slow at first to take the jewelry-making class because a lot of them were busy with their album tracks (I could hear Teresa’s full classes across the hallway and Stacy Julian’s dance music next door), but we had a great time enjoying a smaller first class after the busy night before.
Things picked up with the next group and didn’t slow down until we had taught everyone how to make a cute-as-a-button resin bracelet by 5 p.m. Saturday. Kristen and I learned we were just born to teach together. Our styles meshed and blended so well we have some new ideas up our sleeves for the future.
Closing ceremonies were fab with Creating Keepsakes Founder Lisa Bearnson giving an inspiring talk. One of her tips is something I plan to implement and blog about at a later date.
I’m grateful to be asked to teach CKU beside Kristen and to bring the wonderous techniques of ICE Resin to a new group of passionate crafters, many of whom truly fell in love with the product and its versatility as an art medium. The event, although busy, provided moments of deep reflection for me. I realized a few things about where I’ve come from, where I am now and how the path was supposed to unfold as it did for me to be exactly where I’m supposed to be.
Part of my story is that I re-discovered my artistic journey in the form of scrapbooking more than 10 years ago. I was soooo into it. I loved the pretty papers and embellishments and telling the stories of my life as a wife and mother. But I quickly learned that I was a rule-breaker of sorts. That it was difficult for me to look at something and not want to put my own unique stamp on it with paint and inks and rubber stamps. I had a need, I mean deep-seated need, within me to rip and distress paper.
Fortunately, I wasn’t alone and an entire generation of scrapbookers went mixed-media with me. Some of us a little more than others. And some of us, like myself, went a little over the top with it. But the real reflection of CKU for me was this: Scrapbooking is probably the most intimate and personal craft there is. It’s tied to family and love and documenting lives of those who make this earth journey worthwhile.
These ladies as a collective group reminded me of why I started the journey more than decade ago. I began to tell my story. To make a small mark on the world with photos and words to let others know I was here and to let my lineage know my hopes and dreams so I don’t become dusty photos in a box that future generations toss out in tag sales because the faces are strangers to them.
This is why I scrapbooked. It’s still one of the most powerful reasons why I make art today. Thank you CKU for reminding me of this.